Academic Advising Network (AAN)

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Our Purpose

The AAN Board advocates for, communicates with, and empowers academic advisors and student services professionals across campus. The board facilitates opportunities that foster professional growthpersonal development and community building that promotes an engaged and active advising community on campus.

Guiding Principles

We, as the AAN Board, value, encourage, and use the following as a framework in supporting the advising community on campus:

  • Collaboration - promote efficient and effective working relationships with campus partners
  • Diversity - provide support and initiatives that are inclusive of multiple identities and perspectives

The Academic Advising Network (AAN) Board is committed to providing support and initiatives that are inclusive of multiple identities and perspectives.

The AAN Board respects the diversity of advising and student services professionals across the vast array of intersections of identity, which includes but is not limited to age, race, nationality, socioeconomic status, faith, religion, ethnicity, ability/disability, gender identity, gender expression, and/or sexual orientation.

The AAN Board strives to offer programs and initiatives that are inclusive to these diverse identities and experiences by fostering a welcoming environment for our community members. It is important all participants feel respected as unique individuals and for their contributions to the university. We take responsibility for recognizing, confronting, and addressing bias and discrimination and diligently working for positive change in support of equity and diversity.

This statement includes adapted language from: UW Madison, NACADA, and CEHD.

  • Professionalism - advocate for the value the advising profession brings to the campus community
  • Fellowship - foster community through the development of connections, relationships, and networks
  • Innovation - encourage creative thinking, discovery, and intentionality to push advising boundaries
  • Accessibility - consider the needs of individuals in order to support engagement within the advising community

Our History

The Academic Advising Network (AAN) was formed in 1985 when a group of advisors convened with a desire to implement programming, build community, and share best practices among colleagues on campus. As a result of this small group of forward-thinking professionals, students reap the benefits of improved communication among advisors, collaboration of resources, and a measure of efficiency in the University system. The AAN board continues to work diligently to provide accessible and innovative opportunities for the advising community throughout the academic year.

Diversity and Inclusivity

The Academic Advising Network (AAN) Board is committed to providing support and initiatives that are inclusive of multiple identities and perspectives.

The AAN Board respects the diversity of advising and student services professionals across the vast array of intersections of identity, which includes but is not limited to age, race, nationality, socioeconomic status, faith, religion, ethnicity, ability/disability, gender identity, gender expression, and/or sexual orientation.

The AAN Board strives to offer programs and initiatives that are inclusive to these diverse identities and experiences by fostering a welcoming environment for our community members. It is important all participants feel respected as unique individuals and for their contributions to the university. We take responsibility for recognizing, confronting, and addressing bias and discrimination and diligently working for positive change in support of equity and diversity.

This statement includes adapted language from: UW Madison, NACADA, and CEHD.

AAN By-Laws

By-Laws of the Academic Advising Network at the University of Minnesota - Twin Cities

Last updated: June 2019

  1. Board Members

    1. Membership: Membership should include representation from across campus (various colleges and administrative units), and should not exceed 25 members. A call for board nomination occurs once per year; with the timeline determined by the board. Prior to the call for board nominations, existing board members must declare their interest in continuing on the board for an optional 3rd year (see section 1C). Previous members are allowed to apply for the board after five years have passed since the last year of their term. Co-chairs alternated annually and selected from existing board.

    2. Application: Statement of intent, resume, and interest in leadership/committee positions. The Board reviews all applications, and votes on new members.

    3. Term: 2 years required with an optional 3rd year.

  2. Roles & Responsibilities

    1. Co-chairs:

      1. Nomination: Two to three co-chairs per academic year to serve a one-year term (one previous year of membership on board required). Call for nomination once per year; timeline as determined by the board. Selection is based on interest; an application and vote by the board may be required if there are more than three candidates. If possible, at least one co-chair should remain on the board for an additional year after their term in leadership to serve in a mentoring capacity for the newly elected co-chairs.

      2. Role/Responsibilities: Strategic leadership and direction of the board to include: organizational communication and documentation, meeting logistics, annual retreat, board committees, campus liaison and committee representation.

      3. Co-chair Team: In the event that a co-chair steps down before the end of their term, the remaining co-chairs can choose to collect nominations for a replacement and appoint a new co-chair.

    2. Records and Financial Coordinator:

      1. Nomination: One treasurer/secretary per academic year to serve a one-year term. Call for nomination once per year; timeline as determined by the board. Selection is based on interest; vote by the board may be required if there is more than one candidate.

      2. Role/Responsibilities: Managing board finances and budget to include: monthly reports, and communicate with the Office of Undergraduate Education regarding ongoing spending; records & documents board meeting minutes within shared AAN Board Google Drive file. Other records and administrative support duties may also be assigned.

      3. Co-chair support: In the event that a co-chair steps down before the end of their term, the Records and Financial Coordinator may serve as interim co-chair if needed until another co-chair is selected or until the end of the co-chair term, as determined by the other co-chairs.

    3. All Board Members: Attend monthly AAN meetings (at minimum 6-7 meetings out of 9 per year); attend the majority of AAN professional development events; promote/advertise the AAN, especially at events with a large number of advisor/student service professionals in attendance. If AAN members are not able to attend events, encourage alternative unit representation to attend. Board members may also be called upon by the Awards Committee to review award nomination essays, if needed. 

  3. Committees

    1. All board members are required to participate in one of the committees listed below and meet monthly after board meetings as needed. Committee interest can be self-selected.

    2. Tate Committee Members

      1. Role/Responsibilities:  Members of this committee are responsible for planning the Tate Conference, including securing a venue and caterer, communicating information to the University community (save the date, call for nomination, registration), selection of session presenters, event schedule, and day-of coordination. Communication and collaboration with AAN, OUE, and other university committees will be required.

    3. Professional Development Committee Members

      1. Role/Responsibilities: Members of this committee are responsible for planning and advertising monthly programming related to continued professional growth for student service professionals on campus. Committee is responsible for identifying strategic annual programming to benefit the University community. Committee should take suggestions from the community into consideration as they plan events. Communication and collaboration with AAN, OUE, and other university committees will be required.

    4. Awards Committee Members

      1. Role/Responsibilities: Members of this committee are responsible for advertising and selecting annual campus student services professional awards. Communication and collaboration with AAN, OUE, and other university committees will be required.

    5. Additional specializations (as needed)

      1. Role/Responsibilities: Need for specialization areas are determined based on board goals each academic year.

  4. Logistics

    1. Board meetings

      1. Board meetings are held monthly at various locations on campus ensuring equal opportunity and access to members of the board.

      2. Board meeting times will be set and communicated before the application cycle for the new board year. Any change in this time after the new board year would be subject to a vote from the board.

      3. Co-Chairs set an agenda which may include speakers from campus in addition to general administrative needs for the board every month to include reports from campus committees, AAN committees, and unit updates as needed.

      4. The Records and Financial Coordinator will record & document board meeting minutes within the shared AAN Board Google Drive file.

    2. Communications to campus from board

      1. Communication from the board to campus should follow a standard formatting outline for consistency.

      2. See AAN Board Google Drive for current template examples.

    3. Funding & Budget Logistics

      1. The Office of Undergraduate Education supports and funds the work of the AAN.

      2. Collaborate with the Office of Undergraduate Education liaison to understand annual AAN budget constraints, spending, and reporting processes.

      3. See 2B for treasurer role and responsibilities for funding and budget logistics.

    4. Reporting & Collaboration Logistics

      1. The Office of Undergraduate Education is a primary partner and collaborator of the AAN.

      2. The co-chairs report to the Office of Undergraduate Education liaison for items such as: significant board updates, advisory initiatives, budgetary considerations, or professional development opportunities.

      3. See 2A for additional roles and responsibilities for reporting and collaboration logistics.

  5. By-laws

    1. Changes to the by-laws can be suggested by any board member and proposed by the current AAN co-chairs. All board members can vote to approve or decline the changes. A 2/3rds majority vote is needed to pass the proposed changes.

AAN Board Members

Co-Chairs

Ashley Cruz ([email protected])

Gayle Smaller Jr. ([email protected])

Lisa Folch ([email protected])

Board Members

Annie Montecillo ([email protected])

Claire Schmidt ([email protected])

Danielle Schnettler ([email protected])

Evan Johnson ([email protected])

Jaclyn Combs ([email protected]), Records and Financial Coordinator

Jeff Olsen Krengel ([email protected])

Kate Casey ([email protected])

Korrina Griffith ([email protected])

Marissa Caskey ([email protected])

Phuong Geiger ([email protected])

Quinn (Nelson) Portilla ([email protected])

Ralph Daby ([email protected])

If you’re interested in being a member of the AAN Board, a call for new board members will be emailed following the Tate Conference in March. If you have specific questions at any time, please contact a current board member.

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How to join the listserv

  1. Log into your University of Minnesota Google Email account and enter into the Google Groups App.
  2. From the Groups Home screen, type in Academic Advising Network in the search field.
  3. Click the Academic Advising Network name and select Join This Group.
  4. You are now a member of the Academic Advising Network group.

How to send a message over the listserv

Send an email to Google Group name: [email protected]. This is the list address. Please do not send a command (such as “please add me to this listserv”) to this address as it will be distributed to all who have subscribed.

Best practices for use:

  • New course and program announcements
  • Courses and resources that help in the advising process (e.g., LASK, ISSS, MELP information)
  • Updates on programs relevant to all students
  • Job openings
  • Relevant professional development opportunities

Please do not use the AAN listserv for the following:

  • Advertising open seats in courses
  • Advertising existing courses that have not changed
  • Promoting personal events or philosophies
  • Any other information not related to advising

How to remove yourself from the listserv

  1. Log into your University of Minnesota Google Email account and enter into the Google Groups App.
  2. Click My Groups > Academic Advising Network
  3. In the upper-right corner, click My Settings > Leave this group

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AAN Networking Database

Take a Colleague to Coffee

Send an AAN Gopher Gram

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Rising Star

Outstanding new advising professional

0-4 years in advising; 0-4 years at the UMTC

Award: $500

Criteria:

  • Brings a fresh and innovative perspective to develop creative solutions to challenges facing one’s advisees, unit, and/or advising community.
  • Collaborates with colleagues to move initiatives forward and effect positive change across the University.
  • Advocates for the advancement of a welcoming, inclusive, and just advising environment and acts to create or maintain it.

Goldy Triumph

Outstanding mid-range advising professional

At least 5 years in advising and at least 1 year at UMTC

Award: $500

Criteria: 

  • Committed to student success by establishing advising practices that are culturally relevant, adaptive to individual student identities, and effective at addressing systemic barriers. 
  • Recognizes and addresses opportunities to more effectively support students by anticipating needs and proactively collaborating with colleagues to improve systems and procedures.
  • Seeks and applies new knowledge and builds networks and relationships across campus to enhance understanding and cooperation on campus.

Campus Connector

An advisor who leverages institutional knowledge to mentor others and advocate for transformative change within the advising community [one’s own unit, or across campus]

Approximately 10 years at UMTC

Award: $500

Criteria:

  • Develops a high level of understanding of University policies, unit procedures, privacy regulations, curricular requirements, and referrals to campus services and helps others understand these policies.
  • Leverages historical and institutional knowledge to mentor others in the advising community.
  • Connects new and mid-level advisors to resources and support across campus to benefit their career development and growth.
  • Is a leader in the advising community and pushes to remove barriers, fostering an inclusive and welcoming environment.

Gopher Spirit

An advisor who acts to develop and maintain a strong, inclusive advising community [one’s own unit, or across campus]

Award: $500

Criteria:

  • Builds community and promotes connection amongst others around them by recognizing the unique needs of their colleagues.
  • Seeks opportunities to provide strategic support and enhance morale.
  • Celebrates the diverse strengths and identities within the advising community, taking steps toward building and maintaining an inclusive workplace.

Gopher Way

An advisor who models inclusivity and advocacy

Award: $500

Criteria:

  • Advocates for inclusivity, equity, and justice and takes action to disrupt dominant narratives and structural oppression with advisees, within units, and/or within the advising community.
  • Uses their platform to amplify the contributions and voices of students and colleagues who enact change in the university community.
  • Prompts wider conversations that invite deeper understanding on issues of power and privilege through methods such as accountability, critical feedback, and personal self-reflection.

Ski-U-Mah Collaboration

Presented to a group of individuals who have implemented, created, or saw through a major project or initiative together 

A minimum of 2 and a maximum of 15 team members are required for nomination. 

Award: Team lunch to the Campus Club

Criteria:

  • Project or initiative is large in scope and provides a new perspective or method for improving the work of advising.
  • At least one team member must be an academic advisor. All other team members can be other University faculty, staff, or students
  • Project or initiative fosters an inclusive and welcoming environment.

For event descriptions and other advising related events, please check the Advising Events Calendar.